The ingenious vehicle of the Remusian War Chariot was invented by a member of the Ice Tribes, an enterprising young Remusian soldier, after returning from travels where he saw a wheeled version of the chariot, and adapted it for the cavalry. Though it has never been used in a modern war, it has become a common site in the cavalryís training maneuvers.
A team of two
horses is hitched to a T shaped pole, most
of the time made from carteloreen bone,
lashed with rawhide to a crossbar, also made from bone, or occasionally
wison horn. This pole then stretches
back to where it is connected to the carriage.
This small carriage provides enough room for two people to stand. It is closed on three sides by rawhide stretched and dried over a wison horn frame. This barrier would come to around hip height on most Remusian men. It is often painted with the Remusian coat of arms on the front, and garish designs on the sides, intended to instill fear to the enemy.
This carriage is then set upon two long runners created from carteloreen rib bones. They are curved up quite sharply at the front, using the natural curve of the bone. Then the bone is shaped, using steam, to straighten it to where it is about the size of a man in length. Holes are carved into each runner so that the carriage can be lashed to it. The carriage is on legs that hold it about a fore above the runner. These runners are planed flat on the bottom to make them glide on the snow and ice.
Long leather reins run through loops on the top of the carriage and attatch to harnesses on the horses, and are used to guide the horses. This is how the chariot is steered.
The main use of the chariot is for the fear and chaos it produces in the ranks
of the other
Ice Tribes who
have never experienced anything like it before. It can be a deadly combination
of power, weight, weapons and intimidation.
Two people are in the carriage; the driver and the soldier. These charioteer drivers have been known to charge the enemy line and completely sweep over them, while the soldier is often equipped with a bow, and has been trained to fire from this moving fortress with great accuracy. And the rawhide walls of the carriage provide good cover from return fire. The soldier also carries a sword, which he uses when the chariots charge the enemy lines.
Sometimes, long knives are attached to the carriage, so that they stick out perpendicular to the carriage, creating another weapon in the close combat of the line charge, and when running down fleeing warriors.
The last use is to have a rope, or chain but very rarely, tied to one chariot and the other end held by the soldier in another chariot. The two chariots run at the enemy in unison, stretching the rope taut between them. This rope then can sweep the feet from under multiple targets at once, often inflicting serious injuries. This has been used infrequently and is still being debated for its usefulness. The flaw with this is that the soldier can be pulled out of the carriage by the force of the collision, or more rarely, the carriage itself can be pulled over. It will be determined in the future if this tactic warrants further trials.
The War Chariot is a vehicle that works best in old snow; hardened and compressed. Fresh, soft snow tends to bog down the chariot, as well as making it difficult for the horses to pull. As well, it is best used in straight line conditions. It does not turn smoothly, or in tight circles, and has a tendency to tip over if the attempt is made.
History. There is very little history to the Remusian War Chariot. It has only been part of the Remusian Cavalry for 10 years, so it came after the last great military campaign, the Fifth Orcish War. Still, it has been used, in the border skirmishes with neighboring tribes, and with the riotous nomads of the Kordos territory.
A young man, Jorgan Alleda-fey Launce, was the son of the new breed of a Remusian noble, the trading merchant. His father had made a modest fortune by venturing south by ship and trading Remusian marble, furs, and gold jewelry, for lumber and agricultural products. These he sold in the markets of Remusiat, as well as to the Remusian military. This bought Jorganís quick acceptance to the rank of a junior officer.
Jorgan had a mind, however, that was just as quick to spot an opportunity as was his fatherís. On a trip south with his father, they had cause to partake in a Festival in Salsair, where his wizened eyes spotted men racing with chariots. This fired his imagination, and it is said that by the time his ship arrived back in Remusiat and he disembarked, he had complete drawings of his new invention.
The military was quick to see the possible advantages of this vehicle. So, they took Jorganís plans and built a dozen of them. They were then sent to the border with the Faerons. It proved to be an effective weapon against the Faeron warriors, who had never seen such technology, and it was rumoured that they believed it to be a creature designed by the gods to punish them. It is not known if they still believe it to be alive, though it would seem unlikely.
From this experiment, the military created over a hundred such chariots, and now has integrated it with the cavalry faction of the military.